There’s a pernicious rumor in Blogdom that I’ve heard a few times now. It goes something like this: The words “I’m sorry” are an anachronism, if you’re writing a Regency.
To which I say, “I’m sorry, but that’s just wrong.”
Some quotes from Pride and Prejudice:
Elizabeth, from The Proposal at Hunsford:
In such cases as this, it is, I believe, the established mode to express a sense of obligation for the sentiments avowed, however unequally they may be returned. It is natural that obligation should be felt, and if I could feel gratitude, I would now thank you. But I cannot — I have never desired your good opinion, and you have certainly bestowed it most unwillingly. I am sorry to have occasioned pain to any one.
From Darcy’s letter (THE Letter):
But from the severity of that blame which was last night so liberally bestowed, respecting each circumstance, I shall hope to be in future secured, when the following account of my actions and their motives has been read. — If, in the explanation of them which is due to myself, I am under the necessity of relating feelings which may be offensive to your’s, I can only say that I am sorry. — The necessity must be obeyed — and farther apology would be absurd.
Darcy, during the Second Proposal:
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“I am sorry, exceedingly sorry,” replied Darcy, in a tone of surprise and emotion, “that you have ever been informed of what may, in